WSR 06-01-087

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES
(Economic Services Administration)

[ Filed December 20, 2005, 4:24 p.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 05-22-069.

Title of Rule and Other Identifying Information: WAC 388-450-0055 How does money from other agencies or organizations count against my benefits?

Hearing Location(s): Blake Office Park East, Rose Room, 4500 10th Avenue S.E., Lacey, WA (one block north of the intersection of Pacific Avenue S.E. and Alhadeff Lane, behind Goodyear Tire. A map or directions are available at http://www1.dshs.wa.gov/msa/rpau/docket.html or by calling (360) 664-6097), on January 24, 2006, at 10:00 a.m.

Date of Intended Adoption: Not earlier than January 25, 2005 [2006].

Submit Written Comments to: DSHS Rules Coordinator, P.O. Box 45850, Olympia, WA 98504, delivery 4500 10th Avenue S.E., Lacey, WA, e-mail fernaax@dshs.wa.gov, fax (360) 664-6185, by 5:00 p.m., January 24, 2006.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Stephanie Schiller, DSHS Rules Consultant, by January 20, 2006, TTY (360) 664-6178 or phone (360) 664-6097 or by e-mail at schilse@dshs.wa.gov.

Purpose of the Proposal and Its Anticipated Effects, Including Any Changes in Existing Rules: The amendments will more clearly explain the department policy on the treatment on needs-based assistance payments from other agencies when determining eligibility for cash, medical, and food assistance programs.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: The rule as it is currently written uses a subjective standard when determining whether money received from another agency should be disregarded when determining the payment level for cash assistance. This proposed rule will establish specific criteria that will clarify when money issued from another agency duplicates items contained in the department's standard of need and therefore can be disregarded.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057, 74.08.090.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057, 74.08.090.

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Name of Proponent: Department of social and health services, governmental.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting, Implementation and Enforcement: Steve Ebben, 1009 College S.E., Lacey, WA 98504, (360) 725-4618.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. This proposed rule does not have an economic impact on small businesses, it only affects DSHS clients by outlining the rules clients must meet in order to be eligible for the department's cash assistance or food benefit programs.

A cost-benefit analysis is not required under RCW 34.05.328. These amendments are exempt as allowed under RCW 34.05.328 (5)(b)(vii) which states in-part, "[t]his section does not apply to ... rules of the department of social and health services relating only to client medical or financial eligibility and rules concerning liability for care of dependents."

December 19, 2005

Andy Fernando, Manager

Rules and Policies Assistance Unit

3613.1
AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 02-14-022, filed 6/21/02, effective 6/22/02)

WAC 388-450-0055   How does ((money)) needs-based assistance from other agencies or organizations count against my benefits?   (1) For cash assistance and medical programs for children, pregnant women, and families:

(a) We do not count ((money)) needs-based assistance payments given to you by other agencies or organizations if the ((money)) assistance is given to you for reasons other than ongoing living expenses which do not duplicate the purpose of cash assistance programs. Ongoing living expenses include the following items:

(i) Clothing;

(ii) Food;

(iii) Household supplies;

(iv) Medical supplies (nonprescription);

(v) Personal care Items;

(iv) Shelter;

(vii) Transportation; and

(viii) Utilities (e.g., lights, cooking fuel, the cost of heating or heating fuel).

(b) If the ((money)) needs-based assistance given to you is supposed to be used for ongoing living expenses, then it duplicates the purpose of cash assistance programs. We count the amount remaining after we subtract the difference between the need standard and the payment standard for your family size as described in chapter 388-478 WAC.

(c) "Needs-based" means eligibility is based on an asset test of income and resources relative to the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). This definition excludes such incomes as retirement benefits or unemployment compensation which are not needs-based.

(2) For food assistance:

(a) We do not count money given to you if:

(i) It is given to you by a private, nonprofit, charitable agency or organization; and

(ii) The amount of money you get is no more than three hundred dollars in any one of the following calendar quarters:

(A) January - February - March,

(B) April - May - June,

(C) July - August - September,

(D) October - November - December.

(b) We count the entire amount if the requirements in (a) of this subsection are not met.

(3) For cash assistance, food assistance, and medical programs for children, pregnant women, and families, if we do count the ((money)) needs-based assistance you get, we treat it as unearned income under WAC 388-450-0025.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090 and 74.04.510. 02-14-022, 388-450-0055, filed 6/21/02, effective 6/22/02. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057 and 74.08.090. 98-16-044, 388-450-0055, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98.]

Reviser's note: The typographical error in the above section occurred in the copy filed by the agency and appears in the Register pursuant to the requirements of RCW 34.08.040.